ARGENTINA: King's Ransom

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While driving through the Buenos Aires suburb of La Lucila last September, Juan and Jorge Born, members of one of Argentina's richest families, were abducted by left-wing Montonero guerrillas. As a trainload of commuters watched in horror, the Montoneros, posing as policemen and telephone workers, forced the Borns' limousine into a side street, shot and killed their chauffeur and a business associate who was riding with them, and seized the brothers. Both were executives in the family-owned Bunge y Born, the largest privately owned firm in Argentina (grain, metals, Pharmaceuticals, textiles).

Last week, after months of rumors that negotiations were under way, the Montoneros released Jorge Born, 41, at a railway station near the capital. Juan, 40, had been quietly released several months ago, apparently because his abductors feared for his health, but the news had been withheld so as not to endanger Jorge. Reported size of the Borns' ransom, perhaps the largest ever paid: $60 million.